Chapter 623: Abnormal Traces

Chapter 623: Abnormal Traces [V6C153 – Sorrow of a Silent Parting]

But this small happiness wasn’t enough to lighten his worries. Preston’s brows furrowed as he once again picked up a battle report. His many years of experience and the intuition the demonkin were so proud of told him that there was something hidden within this report—something that warranted his full attention.

Qianye almost forgot the flow of time in the dozen or so days that followed. His life strayed little from searching, hunting, cleaning up the battlefield, and then cultivating to restore his origin power. These details rotated continuously as though they would never end. Add to that the fact that all of this was happening in the uniform environment of the Misty Wood, the stifling sensation almost made one go crazy.

Qianye never slept and only used cultivation to substitute for rest. The endless supply of origin distillate in the Misty Wood afforded him boundless growth in origin power for as long as he could keep digesting it.

And the battles—be it against dark races or fierce beasts—brought him vast amounts of blood energy. After suffering a couple of times, Qianye was fairly careful in using Life Plunder. At least, he no longer made the earlier mistake of using Life Plunder after arriving in the midst of a group with Spatial Flash—the amount of essence blood drawn from a hundred elites brought him to the verge of bursting.

The other reason Qianye didn’t sleep was because his eyes would be filled with images of the dark race combat squads the moment he closed his eyes. He saw countless swords and spears rushing at him while the sounds of gunshot and slaughter echoed in his ears. Only by keeping his eyes open could he extricate himself from these illusions. Yet, once he opened his eyes, all he could see was a scene of unchanging giant tree and mist—that was even more depressing.

Time went by in this fashion, and the soldiers in the Misty Wood only grew in number. It was as though there was no end to them. Moreover, the number of powerful experts had also increased. Qianye even encountered two fellows on the same level as Eden. He had no choice but to retreat after a short exchange because the enemy reinforcements had arrived.

At one point, he was fortunate enough to encounter a small patrol squad of a couple dozen soldiers. Qianye naturally helped himself to them without holding back. The baron-level captain’s shield caught Qianye’s attention as he was cleaning up the battlefield.

This shield had actually blocked a stab from his vampiric edge. Apparently, it was made of extraordinary materials. One had to know that the vampiric blade Qianye had been using was so sharp that it could pierce through most heavy shields.

Qianye didn’t spend too long sweeping the battlefield and duly placed the shield into Andruil’s realm. Just after raising his hand, he was startled to find that Andruil’s realm was now full.

“Time to go back.” A notion emerged in Qianye’s mind.

“How many days has it been since I came out?” The moment this query emerged, Qianye knew that something was wrong with him.

It would seem the unending battles, the unchanging forest, and the otherwise silent ambiance had unknowingly placed too much pressure on him. This phenomenon was quite common among soldiers, especially veteran warriors who had been fighting year round on the front lines.

It was also quite easy to deal with it. All one had to do was leave the battlefield for a while and get some rest. Returning home, for instance, was a good way to recover from this state.

Qianye decided to leave after discovering his problem.

The road back to the base was much longer than he had anticipated. It would seem he had unknowingly ventured deep into the Misty Wood and was quite close to the central caverns. The forest was just as monotonous, but Qianye noticed a small black dot on the branch of a giant tree hundreds of meters away.

At this distance, ordinary people simply couldn’t see this nail-sized dot of black and red. However, Qianye’s superior vision could clearly tell that it was a half-dry drop of blood.

Seeing blood in the Misty Wood was proof that a battle had taken place not long ago. Otherwise, the blood would’ve been broken down by the mist even before it could dry out.

Qianye retracted his aura and faded into the mist before gradually approaching the area. He had encountered several battles during his time in the forest, but he would only lend a hand if the empire’s side was in danger and leave quietly in any other situation. It was fine if there wasn’t a contribution ranking to consider, but now, he might be mistaken for stealing contribution points if he were to jump into battle. Moreover, Qianye wasn’t too keen on dealing with these aristocratic families anyway.

He moved like the wind and soon arrived near the giant tree, where traces of a recent battle appeared before his eyes.

The scene here was bitter with corpses strewn about everywhere and hundreds of soldiers left dead from each faction. Judging from their apparel, there were viscount grade experts from both factions who had fallen here.

It was likely an encounter between an aristocratic family squad and a small subunit from the Evernight side. However, the two sides had fought a desperate battle ending in mutual destruction. At the very least, Qianye didn’t find any traces of a large force in the vicinity. It would seem there were very few survivors since there wasn’t anyone to clean up the corpses of those high-ranking experts.

Qianye didn’t rush into the battlefield and remained in his hidden state, deep in thought.

The situation before him wasn’t normal. The empire and Evernight were indeed irreconcilable, but it was another matter if this hatred was brought onto individual people.

Normally, parties in a random encounter would start to retreat once a certain level of losses had been incurred; very rarely would they fight to the last man. After all, the battle in the Misty Wood was a battle of attrition and not a key battle in some major war. There was no need to fight to the last man. One side would be wiped-out only when the disparity between the two parties was too great.

If Qianye were the commander, he would choose to lead the squad into breaking out of the encirclement, and then seek another opportunity later. Creating an advantage, an ambush, or fighting again under better circumstances was something a qualified general would do.

Qianye circled around the battlefield and, as expected, found many fishy places. There were many corpses here that had collapsed outward. It seemed as though they were running away when they were killed off one by one.

Expressions of extreme terror were plastered across their dead faces. Old veterans of the battlefield would rarely reveal such expressions even when encountering a deadly situation.

The weirdest part was that these abnormal corpses consisted of both imperial and Evernight soldiers. There were two werewolves who had died in a fairly miserable state—one of them had its entire spine pulled out of the body.

Qianye frowned as he glanced back at the battlefield and found many corpses that had been dismembered. This was especially evident with the few viscounts from the Evernight side and one of the human champions. The corpses had been cut up into several pieces and were connected only by a bit of skin which served to barely maintain their shape.

There was something wrong with this battle!

It wasn’t that both parties had fought to their deaths. It looked more like they had been attacking someone together but were wiped out instead. Just what kind of power would force the two factions to team up?

There was only one answer in the Misty Wood. It was a mutant beast birthed by the forest.

The beasts and midgets of the past were significant in number and possessed powerful attacks. However, they were usually quite weak and a single champion could cut down large swathes of them. It was just that the midgets were extremely fast and their spears were poisonous. Even champions could hardly hold out after a couple of stabs.

However, there were no signs of a beast tide on this battlefield at all. If these two units had really encountered beasts, they should be fairly few in number. It might even be a single powerful beast.

Judging from the battlefield, the duration of the battle wasn’t very long. Qianye estimated that even he wouldn’t be able to outdo this assailant in a fight against two hundred people. This meant that this beast’s combat strength wasn’t inferior to his own.

This wasn’t good news at all.

According to reason, even if the forest could produce such powerful beasts, the number should be fairly low. But time and again, this void continent had broken everything that was reasonable.

Qianye maintained his hidden state and remained on the periphery of the battlefield. He had no intention of rushing into the battlefield to collect spoils of war. Excessive greed before fully understanding the situation was akin to courting death.

Moreover, with the passage of time, he found something out of place on the battlefield. The entire place was littered with corpses and there was blood flowing everywhere. Yet, the response of the ground substance was exceptionally slow.

After a while, the restless purple substance stretched out in every direction and absorbed all the blood. After seeing this, Qianye became even more patient and cautious.

A quarter hour passed by before the purple substance finally moved toward the corpses. Only at this point did Qianye feel relieved and began moving toward the battlefield. The wounds on the corpses were helpful in determining the power of this unknown foe.

Qianye had just taken a couple of steps forward when he felt a chill creep up from his legs. He jumped up without a second thought and barely escaped the large cleaver flitting past his previous position. He would’ve lost both limbs if he had been just a little bit slower.

Qianye’s constitution was much stronger than an ordinary person, but that cleaver seemed quite sinister even from its outward appearance and was poised to cut right through him.

The cleaver was grasped single-handedly in a white, tender hand. Soon, a familiar silhouette scuttled out from beneath the corpses and followed up with another slash into the air.

A naive, innocent countenance was reflected in Qianye’s eyes—it was Bai Kongzhao again! This odd girl was like a ghost that just wouldn’t pass on. It felt like one would run into her everywhere.

Qianye was in the air when he discovered that the angle of that slash was extremely clever—it was bound to make him suffer whether he attempted to evade or retaliate. The best way was to attempt a close evasion, but there was a big chance that he would be injured.

A minor flesh wound didn’t seem like much, but Qianye had fought Bai Kongzhao countless times. He knew very well that she was the most dangerous of wolves. Even large prey would eventually fall after accumulating many small injuries.

However, Qianye was no longer the same as before. After seeing through Bai Kongzhao, he immediately swung his arm onto the back of the cleaver.

As expected, Bai Kongzhao’s cleaver shifted to a different angle, ready to receive Qianye’s incoming arm with the sharp edge.

With a sharp clack, Young Dragon’s armguard was actually cut open with the ease of cleaving through rotten wood. This cleaver’s sharpness was unimaginable! When the blade cut through the armor and into Qianye’s arm, he finally realized that the sharpness of the blade was only one aspect. The origin power attached to it was fairly odd—the combination of hardness and sharpness raised the might of this attack more than twofold.

However, this was but a small mishap. Qianye erupted with sudden speed, and his arm vanished from under the edge. His palm seemed to emerge through the void as he grabbed the cleaver and made a sharp turn. Borrowing the momentum of this movement, his vampiric blade flickered toward the girl’s abdomen.

Bai Kongzhao’s expression paled, but on the verge of life and death, she once again revealed her incomparably powerful survival instincts. She abandoned her cleaver decisively and retreated without the slightest bit of hesitation. Qianye’s vampiric blade hadn’t managed to stab very deep when she broke free of it.

Qianye sneered as he glanced over at the fleeing Bai Kongzhao. A thread of virtually indiscernible blood stretched forward and quickly arrived behind the girl.

However, Qianye’s entire body was sent reeling the moment he activated Spatial Flash. His blood energy and origin power were aboil as though he were in a void tempest, causing him to lose control entirely.

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-Legion-'s Thoughts

Please tell me I'm not the only one who thought it was a new type of giant beast...

TL: Legion   ED: Moxie


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